An Open Letter to Competition

Dear Competition,

I hate you.

But I love you too. It’s very confusing, the way our relationship works. See, when I lie in bed trying to fall asleep at night, you’re on my mind. You’re literally the last thought that I think before I drift off. Sometimes I even dream about you. You should be flattered, really. There are plenty of other things I ought to be worried about; bills, work, bills, family, bills, etc. But no. You command my attention. I could fight it, though I never do.206-kettlebell-1

I hate you because you hurt me. Trainings are tough and rigorous. Sometimes they’re so hard that I want to give up. I sweat puddles day after day. The weights get heavier, the circuits more crazy, and that kettlebell can go die. My body aches from it all. Even the things I eat revolve around you. I cannot even have lunch without making it about you. Can I not just have one M&M? I’m not that fat.

My shoulder hurts. Thanks for that, I guess. My ears are swollen. The reactions to that are mixed. Pretty sure something in my foot is broken, my ribs are tender to the touch, and I really don’t think my arm should be making that popping sound when I extend it. There isn’t enough tape in the world to fix my body, which you have broken.

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You make me nervous. No matter how many times we meet, I still get butterflies. It isn’t fair for you to do that to me. Because of you, I’ve been crushed, broken, and humiliated. I’ve met you with confidence only to leave in the depths of sorrow and self-loathing.

But I love you because I’m happy. I have goals now. That’s something I didn’t always have before. There is direction and purpose in my actions. I know what I want and I have a way to work towards it now. You’ve shown me that I’m capable of so much more than I had previously known.

You humble me. Every time I start thinking I know what’s what, you show me I’ve more to learn. You’ve given me confidence. I’m unafraid of those who would use or abuse me. I know how to assert myself, but never forcefully. Always calm, calculated, and collected. I know myself better than I ever have before.

I am strong. I am quick. I am intelligent and a problem-solver. I am becoming who I want to be. Thank you.

Sincerely,

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Every Competitor Ever

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